Companies cheat to avoid customs on e-commerce

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More and more companies cheat to avoid customs on e-commerce

The Norwegian Customs Office (Tollvesenet) reported a significant increase of foreign websites that cheat on the value of shipments so that they fall below the duty-free limit of NOK 350.

The large increase in private e-commerce has proved a challenge to the customs industry, reports Aftenposten newspaper. According to Departmental Head in the customs area (Tollregion) of Oslo and Akershus, Ole Kristian Gjørven, many are avoiding payment of customs.

‘This is especially true of packages from China, and concerns several thousand packages a year’, says Gjørven.

Many cheat by marking the package as a gift, or sample.

NHO reacts strongly

The Confederation of Norwegian Enterprise (NHO) believes it’s completely unacceptable that the Government hasn’t yet investigated the scope of cheating, and the consequences of the e-commerce duty-free trade.

‘The volume has grown dramatically since the amount limit increased from 200 to 350 kroner in 2014. We’ve seen how foreign companies consciously adapt to the Norwegian market by offering shipment beneath the duty-free limit.

Some of this may be pure fraud to avoid paying customs’, says lawyer, Maj Hines, of NHO.

This week, Senterpartiet (Sp) leader, Trygve Slagsvold Vedum, said that if there’s a change of Government this autumn, he’ll remove the free allowance below the NOK 350 limit.

 

© NTB Scanpix / Norway Today

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